MASHAYKHI BAGS GOLD AT ASIAN PARA GAMES

Muscat Daily - - FRONT PAGE - Ashok Puro­hit

Mo­hammed al Mashaykhi capped Oman’s im­pres­sive dis­play at the In­done­sia 2018 Asian Para Games on Fri­day when he claimed the gold medal in the men’s shot put F32 event.

And to make the vic­tory sweeter for Oman was Mashaykhi’s team­mate, Mo­hammed al Qasmi, tak­ing the sil­ver for a one-two fin­ish in the field event on the podium.

Mashaykhi, who is an Asian-record holder in the shot put F32 cat­e­gory, was the favourite to win the ti­tle and he threw the far­thest with a dis­tance of 8.42m in his third at­tempt to pocket the gold.

Qasmi’s per­sonal-best of 7.26m earned him a sil­ver while the bronze went to Iran’s Younes Seifipour with a throw of 6.98m.

It was Mashaykhi’s sec­ond medal at the Games, hav­ing opened Oman’s medal ac­count with a sil­ver in the men’s club throw F32 event last week.

Fol­low­ing the con­clu­sion of the Games on Satur­day, Oman fin­ished with a to­tal of five medals that in­cluded one gold, three sil­ver and one bronze.

Taha al Har­rasi was the other medal­list, as he picked two medals - a sil­ver and a bronze. Har­rasi won the sil­ver in the 400m T36 race and a bronze in the men’s 100m T36 event.

The lat­est ex­ploits by the 28 year old Mashaykhi un­der­lines his cre­den­tials as sul­tanate’s best para ath­lete.

He had won Oman’s first medal at the World Para Ath­let­ics Cham­pi­onship in Lon­don, UK in July, last year.

En route to his sil­ver-medal tri­umph, he had shat­tered the world record of 10.39m only to be bro­ken by Al­ge­ria La­houari Bahlaz at the same event.

Mashaykhi also stole the lime­light at the 2018 CPISRA World Games, in Sant Cu­gat, Spain, in Au­gust, when he clinched three medals in­clud­ing a gold and two sil­ver.

Or­gan­ised by the Cere­bral Palsy In­ter­na­tional Sports and Recre­ation As­so­ci­a­tion (CPISRA), the Omani had won gold in the shot put F32 (2kg) cat­e­gory, a sil­ver in the F32 (1kg) dis­cus event and a sil­ver in the club throw F32 event.

The tal­ented ath­lete had also won a gold and a sil­ver at the tenth Fazza In­ter­na­tional Ath­let­ics Cham­pi­onship held in March in the UAE.

Mashaykhi was ac­com­pa­nied by coach So­nia Mustapha of Tu­nisia in Jakarta. Man­soor al Touqi, pres­i­dent of the Oman Par­a­lympic Com­mit­tee, was the chef-de-mis­sion.

Touqi con­grat­u­lated the ath­letes and said, “It is an achieve­ment to be proud of and I con­grat­u­late the ath­letes and the coach­ing staff for their hard work and com­mit­ment.”

With five medals in­clud­ing a gold, Oman ended 23rd among the 44 par­tic­i­pat­ing coun­tries.

“This is a record num­ber of medals achieved by our ath­letes at the Asian Para Games and it is a tes­ti­mony to the all­round ef­forts made to achieve suc­cess at the con­ti­nen­tal level,” said Touqi.

A to­tal of 3,000 ath­letes from 44 coun­tries took part in the Games. China topped the medals tally with 172 gold, 88 sil­ver and 59 bronze for a to­tal of 319. South Korea fin­ished sec­ond with 53 gold, 45 sil­ver and 47 bronze (to­tal 145) and Iran came third with 51 gold, 42 sil­ver and 43 bronze (136).

Mo­hammed al Mashaykhi (cen­tre) is flanked by Mo­hammed al Qasmi (left) and Iran’s Younes Seifipour at the awards cer­e­mony in Jakarta on Fri­day

Taha al Har­rasi (cen­tre) cel­e­brates with his coaches in Jakarta

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